COLUMBUS, Ohio (Aug 1) – For the third-straight year, the racers who claimed victories at the NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals last April will have the opportunity to claim the coveted JEGS Crown trophy during the upcoming JEGS NHRA Northern SPORTSnationals, September 28-30 at National Trail Raceway.

If any of the eight champions from the Belle Rose event can duplicate their feat in Columbus, they will receive the beautifully handcrafted JEGS Crown trophy, which was designed and created by Dan Dreisbach, the head fabricator at Rahal Racing. The JEGS Crown trophy might be one of the most difficult awards in all of drag racing to earn. In three seasons, only one driver, former Pro Mod champion Mike Ashley has earned the JEGS Crown trophy. Ashley, who currently races a nitro Funny Car in the NHRA POWERade Series, won both events SPORTSnationals events in 2005 while racing in the AMS Pro Mod Series.

Those who are eligible for the JEGS Crown are Craig Bourgeois (Comp), Brad Zaskowski (Super Stock), Gary Emmons (Stock), Britt Cummings (Super Comp), David Tatum III (Super Gas), Kevin Edmonds (Super Street), T.J. Tracey (Top Sportsman) and David Strain (Top Dragster). Bourgeois, of Metairie, La., will have a second chance to win the trophy as he was also the winner of the Comp title at the 2006 NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals.

The following is a list of who is eligible for the 2007 JEGS Crown:The following is a list of who is eligible for the 2007 JEGS Crown:


Driver: Craig Bourgeois
Age: 46
Hometown: Metairie, La.
Car: A/Nostalgia Dragster

Belle Rose Review: For the second-consecutive year, Louisiana racer Craig Bourgeois claimed the Comp title at the NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals. After qualifying eighth, Bourgeois made his way to the final round where he defeated David Rampy, the most successful NHRA sportsman racer in history. The front-engine A/Nostalgia Dragster that Bourgeois drives is capable of six-second performances, making it one of the most feared race cars in all of Comp Eliminator.


Driver: Brad Zaskowski
Age: 26
Hometown: Belmont, Mich.
Car: GT/G ’87 Camaro

Belle Rose review: One of the few drivers in Super Stock who still prefers to race a manually-shifted vehicle, Michigan-based home builder Brad Zaskowski is also one of the most successful. Zaskowski won his second-career NHRA national event title in Belle Rose by beating hometown favorite Joe Teuton of Houma, La., in the final round. En route to the Belle Rose win, Zaskowski also beat former national champion Sammy Pizzolato and past U.S. Nationals champion Joe LoCicero.


Driver: Gary Emmons
Age: 34
Hometown: Friendswood, Texas.
Car: C/FIA ’98 Firebird

Belle Rose Review: To anyone who follows NHRA Sportsman racing, the Texas-based Emmons brothers need no introduction. One of three identical triplets, along with brothers Jerry and Terry, Gary Emmons is currently contending for the national championship in Super Stock and he’s won two events this season in Stock, including the NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals. Following the semifinal round in Bell Rose, at least one member of the Emmons family was guaranteed to be a contender for the JEGS Crown trophy as Gary raced his brother Jerry in the final round.


Driver: Britt Cummings
Age: 37
Hometown: Hammond, La.
Car: dragster

Belle Rose Review: Britt Cummings’ Super Comp win in Belle Rose was the first NHRA national event title of his career, but it was far from his first victory. Cummings, whose father Larry is a former racer, has won nearly 20 events and a championship while racing on the IHRA circuit. Cummings, who is joined on the Moser Engineering team by his brother Slate, has also had plenty of success racing in big bracket events all over the country. In Belle Rose, Cummings defeated Canadian Al Kenny to win the race and earn a chance to compete for the JEGS Crown in Columbus.


Driver: David Tatum III
Age: 40
Hometown: Palmetto, Ga.
Car: ’04 Cavalier

Belle Rose Review: Most racers love the JEGS SPORTSnationals events that are contested in Belle Rose and Columbus but few love them more than David Tatum. A former U.S. Nationals champion, Tatum won the Super Comp title at last year’s JEGS NHRA Northern SPORTSnationals in Columbus and then won the Super Gas title at this year’s Belle Rose event. Unfortunately for Tatum, a driver must win two events in the same class in the same year to be eligible for the JEGS Crown trophy. Tatum’s Belle Rose win came after a narrow 9.91 to 9.92 victory against Mark Skipper.


Driver: Kevin Edmonds
Age: 36
Hometown: LaPlace, La…
Car:’70 Camaro

Belle Rose Review: When Kevin Edmonds drove his ’70 Camaro to a final round victory over Jim Cappiello’s ’68 Camaro in Belle Rose, it marked his first NHRA national event victory, but it was certainly not his first race win. Edmonds, of LaPlace, La., has been a successful E.T. racer for the better part of the last decade. After several more late round finishes, Edmonds is currently in the thick of the battle for the Division 4 Super Street championship.


Driver: David Strain
Age: 47
Hometown: LaPlace, La…
Car: dragster

Belle Rose Review: David Strain, who works as a utilities supervisor at Tulane University, missed much of the 2006 racing season due to Hurricane Katrina, but he’s made up for lost time in 2007 by driving his supercharged dragster to the Top Dragster title in Belle Rose. The tenth-quickest qualifier with a 6.95, Strain defeated John Brimer in the final to win his first NHRA national event. Strain is currently a contender for the Division 4 Top Dragster championship.


Driver: T.J. Tracey
Age: 39
Hometown: Eads, Tenn.
Car: ’63 Corvette

Belle Rose Review: As the winner of the inaugural Million Dollar Drag Race in Huntsville, Ala., and a number of other big bracket racing titles, T.J. Tracey has plenty of experience dealing with high pressure final rounds. Tracey’s performance in Belle Rose was solid, as he drove his Motorvation ’63 Corvette through five tough rounds of competition to claim his first NHRA national event title. A few weeks after winning the Top Sportsman title in Belle Rose, Tracey struck paydirt again, winning the Super Comp category at the O’Reilly Mid-West Nationals at Gateway Int’l Raceway just outside of St. Louis, Mo.

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